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Old 07-04-2011, 01:37 PM   #1
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I'm pretty sure I'm on the 'verge' of SSbbw as a size 28, but I have a question for all of you who are in or were in college/university.

I'm starting up at a new school for a new degree in August, and I'm worried about fitting in the desks. I previously went to a much larger university, which had a desk in the back and some chairs in every classroom for handicapped people (wheelchairs, etc).

I've been to 4 of the 6 rooms I have classes in in the fall, and none of them have this. In 2 of the rooms, the desks are pretty big, and I fit fine. In the other two though, they're the auditorium style seats with the desks that come down in front of you from the side. Not going to happen with my tummy.

What have you all done about this in the past? I've never had this issue, and am a bit embarrassed.
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Old 07-04-2011, 01:56 PM   #2
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Can you pull a desk in from another classroom and sit in the back of the auditorium? That's what some of larger people did when I had a classes in a room like that?

If you fit in the seats, you can always just leave the desk down and balance your notes on a book or binder in your lap, although that option bites.
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Old 07-04-2011, 01:57 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by bbwgatorgirl View Post
I'm pretty sure I'm on the 'verge' of SSbbw as a size 28, but I have a question for all of you who are in or were in college/university.

I'm starting up at a new school for a new degree in August, and I'm worried about fitting in the desks. I previously went to a much larger university, which had a desk in the back and some chairs in every classroom for handicapped people (wheelchairs, etc).

I've been to 4 of the 6 rooms I have classes in in the fall, and none of them have this. In 2 of the rooms, the desks are pretty big, and I fit fine. In the other two though, they're the auditorium style seats with the desks that come down in front of you from the side. Not going to happen with my tummy.

What have you all done about this in the past? I've never had this issue, and am a bit embarrassed.
Yeah I remember those auditorium style seats. I remember I fit in them but it wasn't too comfortable. (I was a size 26) because between my belly and boobs I had very little space to actually WRITE. So what I ended up doing was finding two seats together, sitting in the seat on the right side, and opening the desk in the seat on the left. Then I'd load up my bags in that left sided seat to "save" it. I sat in the right seat, using my open notebook half resting on the arm rest of the left seat/desk part and wrote my notes that way. I tend to sit like that a lot anyway, kind of half "curled up", because it's more comfortable for my wonky hips. That worked well for me. Another option are the disabled seats, which are usually a table and two nice, comfy office chairs. If you went to the equal access department at your university and explained your situation, I believe they'd have to make those available to you.

Good luck!
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Old 07-04-2011, 03:22 PM   #4
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I seldom had auditorium classes...I ranged from like a 26 all the way to 30/32, and I'm 5'10" to boot....I just tried to make the best of a bad situation ..and if I had to pull up an extra desk...I would...the reality was...I am big - like I can hide that...

If I was stuck in auditorium I would do what I believe Vickie was talking about...I would sit in one chair that was next to a pull from between the chairs writing top for lefties...so, that I would use two seats if had to...at least it got the job done.

Good luck!
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Old 07-04-2011, 03:35 PM   #5
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There are accessibility offices (or at least someone in charge of it) at every university now, so if you contact them they should be able to help you make some accommodation - even if it's just putting a free standing chair in the auditorium rooms so that you have some place to sit - if there's room they can put a small table as well.

I went to college a long time ago and at a very old school - walk up 4 story brownstones in down town Boston, and every desk was the ollldddd school wooden chair with attached desk, couldn't even get my thigh under it. At the time there wasn't anyone I could talk to about it, there was no ADA and few colleges/universities had people who could handle accessibility issues.

As much as it sucks to ask, I think you're extremely fortunate to be going to school at a time where there are options to make you more comfortable while you're learning.
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Old 07-04-2011, 04:00 PM   #6
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You can also sit on the end of the row with one seat empty next to you. Raise up that desk and use that one to write on. If anyone tries to sit in that seat just tell them you need the desk and ask if they can sit somewhere else. Yes, there may be a person or two who will argue with you, but stand your ground. If it's possible try to get to class five to ten minutes early so you get to choose two seats you need.

I say don't stress over the seating situation. Really don't. You can always ask the professor if you can use their desk if there just aren't any other options. I never had a professor deny me the use of their desks on the occasions I had to ask.
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Old 07-05-2011, 07:07 AM   #7
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I had my first auditorium style class this summer as I've never been to a uni large enough to have them before. The entire lengths of the side aisles were lined with stand alone desks that were the large, flat-topped kind that connect to the chair. They looked large and roomy, but since they were next to the wall and the outlets, a lot of them would get taken up by people who brought their laptops to class to type their notes. Surely, Louisville isn't the only university that can do this for its students. I'd ask student services or accessibility like Ann Marie said. If that doesn't work, maybe find a friendly janitor? They might be able to point you to a classroom/storage closet with extra desks that could be relocated to your class for the time being.
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Old 07-05-2011, 10:49 AM   #8
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You might also consider one of those bean-bag-on-the-bottom-hard-surface-on-the-top portable writing desk-y type things. I think I"ve seen them at Target for 10 bucks.
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Old 07-07-2011, 11:43 AM   #9
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... In the other two though, they're the auditorium style seats with the desks that come down in front of you from the side. Not going to happen with my tummy.

...
I could never get those damn things to come down either (I'm 6'4" and my knees wouldn't allow the folding part to fold down). I got a clipboard and learned to tuck it against my body supported by my left forearm as I wrote. I'd only bring enough loose paper for the day and then transfer my notes into binders in the evening.

My wife weighed over 500 pounds when she went to college. The ADO compliance people made sure there was a freestanding table and chair with a reserved sign on it in all her classes. Don't suffer -- ask -- its what they're there for.
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Old 07-08-2011, 05:02 PM   #10
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Okay what I did is going to sound really extreme, but I was just really scared at the time of getting made fun of. When I went to school, I did not have any self esteem or confidence due to the comments I grew up hearing from family (not friends or strangers but family). Although no one, other than my family, has ever made a comment.. I was scared of the what ifs.

Sooooo what I did is I moved into the dorm when they said we could (which was a week before actual classes). Then I went to every single building and looked at every single classroom. I found several with tables and shares as opposed to desks, auditorium-style, or even the swivel ones. Then the ones that had desks in them I would see about 2 different styles of desks and I tried them out to see which (if any) felt more comfortable. I was shocked that there was one style I actually fit in (barely but I did).

Then when I got my schedule I went to every single one of the rooms selected and if it was a desk room... if it did not have the desk I could sort of fit in... I moved one in there from a different classroom.

Then the day of each of my classes I always got there 15 to 30 mins early to make sure no one stole MY seat.

By the end of my first year, I knew where the classrooms were with the tables and chairs and tried to work my schedule to only pick classes in those rooms. Sometimes I could and sometimes I couldn't. But the ones I couldn't I just moved desks around. No one was ever around when I moved desks. I don't know how I worked that out. LOL


Hopefully, no one on here says anything mean about how extreme I was. Now, I am different. I love who I am. I would not be as worried or embarassed.

(I just explained this to my roommate and verbally it does not sound nearly as extreme as it does typed. LOL Can you tell I am nervous about confessing this on here???)
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Old 07-08-2011, 06:27 PM   #11
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(I just explained this to my roommate and verbally it does not sound nearly as extreme as it does typed. LOL Can you tell I am nervous about confessing this on here???)
To me this doesn't sound extreme: it sounds intelligent and effective. Some people relish confronting authority and some don't. I probably would've done it your way.
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Old 07-08-2011, 10:05 PM   #12
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Everyone has given great suggestions (tho, I have very little lap to speak of, and what I do have is small and very forward slanted, so those bean bag lap trays have never worked for me - but if you're taller it might be a different story). Also, check out this thread with a lot of helpful advice and other creative ways different people have approached this issue.

Best wishes to you in school.
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Old 07-09-2011, 09:02 AM   #13
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Okay what I did is going to sound really extreme, but I was just really scared at the time of getting made fun of. When I went to school, I did not have any self esteem or confidence due to the comments I grew up hearing from family (not friends or strangers but family). Although no one, other than my family, has ever made a comment.. I was scared of the what ifs.

Sooooo what I did is I moved into the dorm when they said we could (which was a week before actual classes). Then I went to every single building and looked at every single classroom. I found several with tables and shares as opposed to desks, auditorium-style, or even the swivel ones. Then the ones that had desks in them I would see about 2 different styles of desks and I tried them out to see which (if any) felt more comfortable. I was shocked that there was one style I actually fit in (barely but I did).

Then when I got my schedule I went to every single one of the rooms selected and if it was a desk room... if it did not have the desk I could sort of fit in... I moved one in there from a different classroom.

Then the day of each of my classes I always got there 15 to 30 mins early to make sure no one stole MY seat.

By the end of my first year, I knew where the classrooms were with the tables and chairs and tried to work my schedule to only pick classes in those rooms. Sometimes I could and sometimes I couldn't. But the ones I couldn't I just moved desks around. No one was ever around when I moved desks. I don't know how I worked that out. LOL


Hopefully, no one on here says anything mean about how extreme I was. Now, I am different. I love who I am. I would not be as worried or embarassed.

(I just explained this to my roommate and verbally it does not sound nearly as extreme as it does typed. LOL Can you tell I am nervous about confessing this on here???)

It's extreme, but it worked for you.

I never could have done that for a ton of reasons, but biggest of which was we had 15 mins between classes and many were blocks and blocks away and then up 3-5 flights of stairs.

But glad it worked for you and who knows, might work for someone else.
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Old 07-09-2011, 11:51 AM   #14
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Okay what I did is going to sound really extreme, but I was just really scared at the time of getting made fun of. When I went to school, I did not have any self esteem or confidence due to the comments I grew up hearing from family (not friends or strangers but family). Although no one, other than my family, has ever made a comment.. I was scared of the what ifs.
I don't think this is so extreme. I did something similar when I started college. I was 19 and neither or my parents had gone to college, so it just added to the stress. I remember doing a practice run to make sure I could physically walk from one building to another during the in-between class breaks. I also had the "luck" to wind up in a dorm that had originally been planned for guys, so they retrofitted the bathrooms from urinals to stalls--and they put the doors on some weird way that there was no room (even for skinny girls) to sit on the toilet with the doors shut. That was SO much fun to deal with!

To the OP, if you want to contact the Disability Services office for their assistance, I'd recommend doing it ASAP. I'm a college teacher and I know what they are willing to do/how helpful these offices can be vary widely (laws or not). Sometimes it's just a phone call or short visit can get lots of help. Other times it's a big bureaucratic deal.
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Old 08-28-2011, 09:19 AM   #15
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Get there early and find out what the seating arrangements are. I have learned as a very big person (400 plus pounds) that if I can't get there early enough to work out my own seating arrangement then I just don't go. With school, you can usually pull up a single chair to the side of a desk. I know it sucks though! Being singled out in that way. I got my Masters degree online where this wasn't a problem.
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Old 08-28-2011, 09:45 AM   #16
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I honestly wouldn't worry too much. If you're having trouble with seating, PLEASE contact the ADA. There is no point missing out on your PAID-FOR education because you're embarrassed or uncomfortable because of seating. You deserve to be there just as anyone else. Chances are, other people are oblivious to your seating problems...that's what I've found. Nothing against them, it's just they don't have the supersize body.

One of my professors required exams to be taken in certain auditorium seats...whereas, I usually sat at the tables....he noticed my obvious discomfort and allowed me to sit elsewhere. After that professor, he gave me the courage I needed to request my own seating or make-do with using double desks (as long as everyone else had a place to sit). Frankly, a lot of thin students also use two desks. It's just more comfortable.

For what it's worth, once you get past the freshmen/sophmore courses...seating *generally* gets better. Significantly better!

Too long; didn't read version: Stick up for yourself and voice your concerns! People don't know what you want/need unless you tell them! Good luck!

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Old 08-30-2011, 05:46 AM   #17
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. In the other two though, they're the auditorium style seats with the desks that come down in front of you from the side. Not going to happen with my tummy.

What have you all done about this in the past? I've never had this issue, and am a bit embarrassed.
As a brand new, college freshman who is at a size 24, I have the same problem! In my lecture hall classes, I never pull the seat down over my leg. Instead, I'll use some other notebooks/textbooks as a desk, and write on my leg. I decided to make it a personal choice to NOT use those desk things, instead of making it look like a battle between wood and adipose.

Good luck and study hard!
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Old 08-30-2011, 07:51 AM   #18
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There should be a section of campus that deals with disabilities of all kinds, accessibility, ADA issues, etc. They, by law, have to accommodate you, and will often bring in a regular chair and table for you. This should be done for every classroom you have. Just make sure it's marked not to remove it so that teachers don't take it to other rooms and you have to hunt it down each class.
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Old 09-01-2011, 10:14 AM   #19
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I was really nervous about this before I went for my first year of college (I was the OP of the thread that mcbeth linked.) Luckily for me, most of the rooms had several different types of desks in it.. I did my best to get there 5-10 minutes early and be one of the first people in the room so I could snag the most comfortable one. A few classrooms had one large desk with a freestanding chair for kids with disabilities.. if there was no one in a wheelchair in my class, then I'd try to use that one. Most of the rooms didn't have that though, so instead I tried out the various desks that were in there.. some of the desks looked to be exactly the same except maybe some had blue seats and some had green seats but they were actually different. As far as stadium seating goes, I was able to mostly shove myself in.. it wasn't exactly easy or comfortable but it worked fine for the couple hours I was there. I personally didn't want to ask for special accomodations.. if I could fit, I'd rather do it if even if its somewhat uncomfortable (I know that sounds ridiculous but it worked for me.) However, like everyone else has said, my college did have an office where you could inquire about those kinds of things. I noticed in one of my classes there was a girl about my size who had a desk reserved for her in the front for I think the same purpose.

EDIT:

EDIT2: Also, for the record, I made it fine through college even with the desk issue (which practically ended my college career before it even started.) & I just graduated with my associates in May! Don't let your concerns stop you from doing what you have to do to make college work.

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Old 02-03-2013, 10:21 PM   #20
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I am a really big girl, around the 34 range. I was in Uni up until last year. In the auditorium size places, I just pulled up the table on the desk next to me, it works fine. I wouldn't sit in the table and chair they leave in the front because I am the same, I don't want a spectacle being made of my fatness. Sitting in the back corner works fine to avoid that. Don't stress, you will be fine. I am also an American in Australia, the fat hate is much worse over here.
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Old 03-25-2013, 08:27 AM   #21
BigBootyBeautyXXL
 
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I hated this when I was in school, those desks are terrible. With my wide bottom my hip was always hanging over the side of the seat. I eventually just mentioned it and got a seat brought in.
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Old 03-25-2013, 10:17 AM   #22
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snuggletiger has a ton of rep. Literally. As in over 2000!snuggletiger has a ton of rep. Literally. As in over 2000!snuggletiger has a ton of rep. Literally. As in over 2000!snuggletiger has a ton of rep. Literally. As in over 2000!snuggletiger has a ton of rep. Literally. As in over 2000!snuggletiger has a ton of rep. Literally. As in over 2000!snuggletiger has a ton of rep. Literally. As in over 2000!snuggletiger has a ton of rep. Literally. As in over 2000!snuggletiger has a ton of rep. Literally. As in over 2000!snuggletiger has a ton of rep. Literally. As in over 2000!snuggletiger has a ton of rep. Literally. As in over 2000!
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I have long legs so those dumb classroom desks were uncomfy for me too.
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